Sometimes the best-laid
plans become victims of circumstance, and that happened a little bit to Oregon
AFSCME Child Care Providers who participated in an Employment-Related Day Care
(ERDC) Lobby Day on March 27. As you may have heard, March 27 turned into "PERS
Day" at the capitol, which sort of overshadowed everything else.
Still, Local 132 (CCPT)
staff representatives Faye Zepeda and Gloria
Gonzalez, plus Local 132 members Shelly Campbell and Penelope Vaughn, joined
providers from SEIU, Kinder Care and advocates from Children First to talk with
legislators on the importance of removing the cap on the number of families
allowed to participate in ERDC.
Campbell and Vaughn met with
Rep. Nancy Nathanson (D-Eugene), one of the legislators who has been diligently
tracking the ERDC issue.
"Rep. Nathanson understands
that if a parent doesn't have access to affordable, stable care for their
children they can't go to work," says Council 75 Political Coordinator Eva
Rippeteau. "For many people entering the workforce for the first time —
or after looking for work through the recession — the jobs they are
getting are lower wage. Having open enrollment for ERDC will allow a parent to
take a job and get access to quality care immediately and not have to worry
about being on the wait list."
Despite the hullabaloo over
PERS that day, Zepeda says the providers had a good time and made some
"It was good to see so many
different groups banded together to support the cause," she said.
There is always more
information on Local 132 and its providers on the CCPT website.